Day 2–Beautiful Life Management 28 Day Challenge


Today was a day of interruptions.  I don’t handle those very well–interruptions that is.  I always joke with my husband that my life looks perfect on paper and then life happens.

It all started last night when I stayed up late helping with a project.  To my frustration my alarm rang this morning and it read 6 am instead of 5 am.  I must have been hitting snooze for the last hour.  I snuck in a hurried Bible reading and rushed to get ready for the day before the kids were up.  I was not able to get a hold of my thoughts until nap time.  That is when I saw the error of my wrong thinking and attitude.  Instead of realizing that I had started my day interrupted and I simply need to make adjustments accordingly I was just frustrated that everything was not working out as I had planned.  Sigh…  In the end I was able to ask for forgiveness of God and my family for my frustrated attitude.  As I get ready for bed I see that I was able to get most things done.  I got my workout in later in the day (and the kids joined in which was fun), wiped the bathroom as I washed my face and brushed my teeth for bed and my kitchen sink is empty and wiped clean.  Although I did not get to the big pile of “to file” in my office, I did clear all paper clutter throughout the house–kitchen, front door, computer desk and school done box.

What I learned today and what I am thankful for today is interruptions.  It was a good, hard lesson I learned today.  I would love for my life to be neat and orderly with everyone falling into line with everything I have scheduled and planned.  But God gave me a minister husband with an unpredictable schedule, and 6 children–I don’t need to say more;)  The thing about interruptions is not the interruption itself but how I handle the interruption–rejoice in my interruptions.  So I will continue to pray and ask for grace to handle each interruption with patience and love, always looking for God’s will.  This was my strength today: Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’  Isaiah 41:9-11
Click here Dodge Family Routine for Tuesday to see what I hoped my day would look like.  We did make a valiant effort to get as close to the schedule as possible.

Beautiful Life Management 28 Day Challenge

A few weeks ago I was introduced to a wonderful company GraceWorks.  They sell beautiful planners specifically geared towards the wife, mother and teacher.  Two amazing resources Tricia offers for free is the Planning to be a Blessing booklet and the Beautiful Life Management 28 Day Challenge.

Beautiful Life Management

I have taken Tricia on for the 28 day challenge.  Today is day one.  It was a very good day.  In part from planning ahead but also from the encouragement that Tricia offers.  And to keep you accountable she has you email her everyday, she offers encouragement and tallies your points.  There are prizes at the end.  Prizes even motivate adultWinking smile

The thing that kept us all going today was my Dodge Family Routine for Monday.  I just recently added a wide format printer to my office and just love that I can print an 11 x 17 page.  All day the kids kept referring to the poster for what was next and the little ones kept asking anyone that could read to tell them what was next.  It was a great motivator and a visual reminder of what was next.  The schedule also flowed well for us because I even figured in free time and down time.

All in all it was a very good day and I am excited to see what will happen in my home in the next 28 days.

Curriculum overview for the week of October 25-29, 2010

What’s in the box for Alexis and Olivya

This is what Alexis and Olivya will be doing this week:

We are studying the letter E this week and focusing on the number 6.

Box 1–

Letter E and the number 6 to put on the letter tree
Our Letter Tree

Box 2

Box 3

Box 4

Box 5

Box 6

Box 7

Box 8

Box 9

Box 10

Box 11

Box 12

We do not do every box every day but these will be our twelve activities we will focus on this week.

What’s in the box for the Tot and Tiny Tot.

This is what Paul and Chi get to look forward to this week:  Our tot and tiny tot join in with what Alexis and Olivya are doing.  But they do have specific activities that are just for them that hopefully are fun, teaching new skills and increasing their attention spans (we are really working on that one with Chi)

Box 1–

Box 2

Box 3

Box 4

Box 5

Box 6–  This week for bible we will focus on the story of Elijah.


What’s in the box for Samuel and Isaac?

I will post pics and descriptions of what they are working on later this week but I do what to show you the one new curriculum that we will be working of this week.

Both the boys have been struggling with their math facts.  So we will be taking a break from their regular math books and doing times tales this week.  We are all excited to start.

Virus–Sick computer

I have been silent all week because my computer has been sick.  It is still not back to normal.  Evidently last Sunday while I was merrily sewing away my computer was contracting a virus.  It has crippled everything.  Thankfully my husband has taught me to back up everything on our Seagate 1.5TB External drive.  I have not lost anything!  What I have lost is time so I will be posting several things in order to catch up a little but I will try and consolidate as much and possible so as not to overwhelm anyone.

First of all I must encourage all of you, if you do not have an external drive to back your documents on to, please, PLEASE invest in one.  You will not be sorry.  Just recently Tobin was telling me of reading about putting the external drive in your fireproof safe at night or (and especially) when we are way.  Since Tobin is in his 3rd year of a doctoral program, all his documents are very precious and represent hours of sweat, blood and tears (okay the tears are from me;).


I have just finished printing out the 4th quarter  planners for the older boys and me.  I have made a few changes to the older boys planner.  Last quarter they were these very large documents of over 100 pages.  Now they are only 36 pages that I have double sided.   The front and back are printed on cardstock for durability and after the boys have finished personalizing their planners I laminate the front page.  Click here to see the K-3 planner and here for the 4th-6th grade planner for yourself.  It is a word document so you can customize it any way you want.  The most major change that I have made since the original planners is that I have eliminated the journaling pages.  We will continue doing daily journaling but in a separate book.

Note:  We educated our children year-round and we begin our new school year with the calendar year.  So we are currently finishing 4th grade for Samuel and 2nd grade for Isaac.  In January both boys will move to the next grade level.  Of course as many of you know, home educated children have the freedom to progress at their own pace.  The grade levels are just so they can explain themselves when asked.  That is usually the first question children are asked, “What grade are you in?”

I have also updated my planner.  In this last quarter I have made several changes and am challenging myself in a few areas.  I am calling it my 90 Day Challenge.

I have set for myself several Goals:

1. Read entire Bible in 90 days

2. Walk 7 days a week

3. Complete ChaLean Extreme

4. Pay off van

5. Organized life–lose weight, disciplined about getting up, going to bed and making sure I am doing the things that are most important to me.

6. Organized home–with 8 people in a small home we all must learn to be more careful with where things go and make sure they get there.  With that said, there are several areas that need to be decluttered and better systems created to contain our stuff.

7. Structure & routine–as a pastor’s family our lives can be unpredicable.  One phone call can change my whole day.  However, since our children’s education and the sanity of the momma are also important certain areas can not be left undone.  So in the next 90 days these systems, structures and routines will be established in order to be free to go where Jesus leads.

So here is the planner I have created for myself.  I am only doing one week at a time.  In the past I have printed out an entire quarter, even an entire year.  What a waste.  Somewhere along the way, I would change my mind, think of something new to add or want to update the planner.  So I have a section for monthly calendars (these are a year at a time), then weekly planners, which I print only a week at a time, menus,which I do a month at a time, etc.  My three favorite planners that have beautiful pages and I use some from each are:  Notebooking pagesMotivated Moms and The Intentional planner.  All are very affordable, user friendly and I highly recommend them all.

None of the planners are put together so I will post pictures later of the finished products.

I am now off to do a library purge.  Although I have equivalent to 12 floor to ceiling bookcases of shelving, I don’t ever seem to have enough.  So I am going through the books.  In the process I am organizing (many books get lost when they are put back on the shelves so I will get them back to their home), labeling all the books and entering them into library thing.  I will post pictures of my progress.  I keep reminding myself that this project will be a work in progress.